Questions & Answers
Below are some common questions that people ask in order of popularity. If you don't see an answer to a question you have, be sure to email us at email@example.com. We'll be happy to answer any question you have about the ministry, programming, our founder, funding and financials, Jesus and life, or anything else you can think of.
Question: When was Freedom Reigns Ranch founded?
Answer: Our first official session was in October 2015, registered with the state of Tennessee as a charitable organization in Spring 2016 and received our 501c3 Status from the IRS in December 2016. The ministry, however, began two years before the first official session with neighborhood kids close to the original facility where our founder boarded her horse and children in connection with her church who were in need.
Question: How much does it cost?
Answer: Nothing. All Ranch programs are free-of-charge to participants. When we founded the ministry, we received what we believe was a mandate from the Lord that we were not to charge anything for sessions and to trust God for the provision to do so. There is nothing wrong with programs that do charge- but for us, it was important to not charge.
Question: Who comes to Freedom Reigns?
Answer: Individual (one-on-one) sessions are focused toward children and young adults ranging in age from 4-35, though the primary age we serve is 12-24. Most of the children and young adults in the session program have been through trauma or another circumstance in life that has been challenging for them. These situations represented are as unique as each individual, though we commonly see a few situations represented multiple times: loss of a sibling, parent, or friend, divorce, bullying in school, survivor of physical, emotional, or sexual abuse, rape, or assault, human trafficking, and domestic violence. No situation is too "severe" or too "minor" to be involved in the Ranch session program. If someone believes they can benefit and desires to participate, we welcome them.
Question: How old do you have to be to participate? Can adults be participants?
Answer: For safety and practicality reasons, the youngest age we welcome at the ranch is 4. Most of our participants are aged 12-24 but we do not have an age "cap" and have even served the parents of participants from time to time. We love to serve college students and young adults in our program as there is a great need for strong mentors at that age.
Question: Do you have to be a Christian to come to the Ranch? Are you "preachy"?
Answer: Our Staff and Session Leaders are Christians who believe that the best way we can show God's love to people is to "live it out" and put our faith into action by serving and loving people well. Our primary purpose is doing just that. If you ask us about Jesus or our or history, you'll notice that the faithfulness and healing God offers to us is deeply woven throughout our story. At no time will our commitment to those that come to the Ranch (whether participant or volunteer) waiver due to being of a different belief. Jesus loved people unconditionally and He loved them well. We do the same in following His example.
We are a ministry, and our values and conduct reflect that of a Bible-believing Christian. Therefore, all volunteers are expected to operate within the rules and standards set forth in our Handbook and include expectations of excellence in conduct with people and animals, language, dress/presentation, safety, and integrity.
Question: How do you fund the program?
Answer: Our primary funding comes from individuals who see the value in what we have to offer. We rely on the generosity of people in our community and around the world to believe in the mission of Freedom Reigns Ranch and for God to move on the hearts of those to give. We have never had a need unmet (though sometimes we hold our breath!)
Question: What actually goes on in a session?
Answer: A session is as unique as each individual. Because our one-on-one session program is always one leader-one participant-one horse 100% of the time, we are able to cater that 90 minutes to be exactly what each individual participant needs. Activities can include farm chores, groundwork and liberty work with horses, riding horses, helping assist in the rehabilitation process of rescued horses including learning basic veterinary care, painting horses (as in painting ON them) exploring the land, doing crafts, fishing, playing games.... pretty much anything you can do outside!
Junior Ranchers is our group mentorship program and participants are grouped by their age as well as life circumstances. Activities are similar to the one-on-one format but are more broadly focused with elements of leadership, teamwork, and community built into the activities, including group discussion time.
Question: How do I sign up/sign my child up for sessions? What are the requirements?
Answer: Our application process is located here. The only requirement is that participants want to come! No prior experience with horses is necessary.
Question: How often can I have a session?
Answer: Most of our participants come every other week or one time per month. Occasionally participants come every week or on a non-regular schedule depending on needs and availability.
Question: Is there a waitlist?
Answer: While we seek to serve as many people as we can, we always want to do so well and with great intentionality. There is currently a waitlist.
Question: Can I pay or donate to be moved to the top of the list?
Answer: We would love to have you partner with us by donating to help make it possible to provide more sessions, however in line with the word the Lord gave us about never charging for sessions, we will not allow donations or money to be a reason to supersede the waitlist. We believe in the inherent worth of every individual as a Child of God and that everyone should be served equally, regardless of financial means.
Question: I want to be a volunteer. Can I have an application?
Answer: We'd love to have you join our volunteer team. We love our volunteers and have an incredible community that is like family. Click here for information.
Question: My youth group/church group/community group/scout group (etc) wants to volunteer. Who do we call?
Answer: Group volunteers are amazing! Please fill out the form here to let us know what you'd like to help with.
Question: Where do you get your horses?
Answer: Some of our horses have been rescued from abuse, neglect, and abandonment and others have never known need a day in their life and were lovingly donated by their former owners for any number of reasons. You can learn more about our incredible herd by clicking here.
Question: Do you give riding lessons?
Answer: While learning horsemanship and how to ride is a natural part of our session program, the primary focus of our programming is mentorship. We are a facility entirely devoted to the programs within the scope of Freedom Reigns Ranch and do not give riding lessons, board horses, lease horses, etc.
Question: I have a horse I'd like to donate to Freedom Reigns Ranch, who do I contact?
Answer: We would love to learn more about your horse. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with the following information: Horse's name, age, breed, history (training, competition, veterinary and health), current condition, physical ability and limitations, any required maintenance, and location. We are unable to accept horses aged 20 or older and encourage you to allow your companion to live out their golden years in the company of the people they trust and their herdmates or consider retirement boarding. Paradigm Farm is an incredible facility for your senior horse if you are unable to keep them in their current situation.
Question: I know of a horse that needs rescue. Can you help?
Answer: The short answer is yes. For information about how we are able to help with equine rescue please click here. We will either help directly if we are able to or get you directly in touch with a local rescue who can assist if we cannot.
Have a question? Let us know! Email email@example.com